Testees (Showcase: Tuesday, 9:00 PM ET/PT) focuses on the lives of Peter (Steve Markle) and Ron (Jeff Kassel), human guinea pigs for TESTICO. Ron and Peter are humiliated into returning to TESTICO as they need the money, missing out on a penis enlarging spray in the process. Larry (Kenny Hotz) is the lucky recipient of said spray, trying to turn on Amy the receptionist (Shauna MacDonald) with his outsized pork sword.
After an anal probe, Ron becomes pregnant. Cue a visual pee joke and Ron eating melted ice cream with a pickle. The “man becomes pregnant” angle seems oddly familiar, since I saw much of the same thing on an episode of The Young Ones. Ron’s “birth” in particular seems lifted from that show, although I don’t want to spoil the joke for Testees fans.
For a show dealing in base humour, Testees comes across a bit subdued. The best scenes are all Hotz’s, as his Larry is a self-satisfied sleazebag. Markle and Kassel are good leads for the show, but they’re wasted on a script that only occasionally reaches the Jackass-with-comic-timing heights of Kenny vs. Spenny.
It’s like Hotz is dulling Testees‘ potential by trying to adhere to basic sitcom rules. This trap caught Trey Parker and Matt Stone in a vise when they launched That’s My Bush! Maybe this is a case of Hotz overextending himself, since the fifth season of Kenny vs. Spenny is upcoming. It’s hard to say.
I hope Testees improves on its pilot, since I don’t want this to be the American Dad! of Hotz’s career. Testees isn’t the worst show on TV like Entertainment Weekly says, but I was expecting a Drawn Together-like paean to offensiveness. Of course, Drawn Together sucked its first episode, so Testees isn’t a total write-off.